Jayna knows she’s smarter than everyone. That is the reason she is there. Crunch numbers, cross data sets, find correlations, predict trends, make profit. The agency Mayhew McCline loves her work.

“That’s the heart of my problem. I haven’t lived enough. My character is just the combination of my intellect and my faults. I haven’t had time to become more complex, more interesting.”

page 161

And yet… “I still get it wrong,” she says. The scientific analysis of people, passion and pleasure seem to elude her.

Why is this on our bookshelf?

This is the age of smarter humans. Brain implantation has made advanced cognition a reality for most of the population. If you are a math geek, you will really dive in. Having never heard of the Taniyama-Shimura Conjecture, I had to look it up. If I were eligible for an implantation, I wouldn’t need to look it up!

This book was nominated for a 2013 Philip K Dick Award, along with 7 other nominees.

Rating (3 stars)

There were a lot of characters and seemingly random happenings.Before I was nearly done, I had to read a lot of it again to decipher who was who and what was going on.

Personally, if a book makes me do that much work, I would prefer it to be nonfiction. On the other hand, once I got there it was worthy of the second read. Charnock gave her future a believable feel and left me with plenty to ponder.

The disconnect between decision makers and power structures is obvious now. Will it become worse when the data rules it all? What does a future of information currency really have to offer? What is our human value?